5 TIPS FOR A SUCCESSFUL CAREER IN ACCOUNTING AND FINANCE
A career in finance or accounting can be highly lucrative. From solid financial incentives to working in flexible environments, you will get many perks and privileges along the way. However, getting a foot in the door and sustaining a position in these fields may be extremely challenging due to the many applicants and limited vacancies. So you must put in the time and effort to raise the bar and have a successful career. If you are unsure about what to do for that, read on:
- Do An Internship
After graduating from college, internships are a great way to get your feet wet in the workforce. They can provide you with hands-on experience while learning about various potential career paths. As you will be working with numerous professionals, they can also assist you in expanding your professional network as well. The more varied your internship experience, the more appealing your CV will be to potential employers.
At the same time, you must be familiar with the necessary deadlines and adhere to them if you are looking for an internship in organized fields like finance and accounting. Summer internship opportunities in these industries become available to students in the autumn semester, and successful applicants are notified of their placements well before winter break.
Acquire Relevant Certifications
While your formal education and degree are critical factors in your career advancement, other certifications and qualifications are equally important. Though there are several prestigious certifications in accounting and finance, the Certified Public Accountant (CPA) has a clear edge over others. However, before jumping to the preparation for CPA, you have to ensure access to world-class study material and test prep resources, Wiley vs Becker is a popular comparison among students as the biggest names in test prep.
The good news is that you will not have to worry about the expense of the certificates because many firms typically reimburse their employees either half or totally for successfully obtaining the certification.
- Manage Your Time
The fact that accountants and financial experts are usually busy is a good indicator. It signifies that they are a part of a booming stable, if not booming, industry. That being said, a frenetic, always-on work environment might make it difficult to produce high-quality work on time. That is where time management comes into play.
An effective time management approach may help you identify your chores and set aside the time necessary to finish them. That way, you will have a better idea of what needs to be done and how much time you have to accomplish that. In addition, making a list of your most important tasks and allotting yourself adequate time to do them will help you feel less stressed.
As an accounting and finance professional, leveraging the Pomodoro technique is one way to manage your time effectively. The approach divides work time into 25-minute blocks with a 5-minute interval. These breaks increase productivity by enabling you to maintain a clear and refreshed state of mind throughout the workday.
Find A Mentor
Individuals with adequate experience and credentials to offer advice in a given sector are known as mentors. Mentorship gives you access to insights, empowering you to avoid typical pitfalls and seize more opportunities along the way. Many finance mentors have access to a diverse group of people within and beyond their business. As a result, they can suggest conferences and events that will provide you with a host of networking opportunities.
It bears worth mentioning that a mentor is more than just someone you can send an email to when something goes wrong at work. They help you improve both professionally and personally. For instance, a mentor can assign you a unique project to work on to develop or improve the quality of skills that you already possess.
You may be apprehensive about where to begin looking for a mentor. Well, a former internship supervisor, a professor at your university, or even a former coworker could serve as a mentor as long as they have proved their mettle in the accounting and finance industry.
Improve Soft Skills
The rise of automation in accounting and finance has put soft skills back at the forefront. Although robots can automate various tedious and time-consuming tasks and manage data-crunching operations, they cannot feel a story or sympathize with clients. Thus, acquiring “soft skills” such as telling a compelling story, delivering an outstanding presentation, and effectively collaborating with business partners is essential to becoming a well-rounded financial professional.
Imagine being an expert at crunching numbers but falling short of the skills to convey your message to the CFO in a way that resonates with him/her. In the eyes of business leaders, how successfully you conveyed your message matters most. If your data tales enthrall people, you will be given more opportunities to deliver presentations. Plus, you will be remembered by leaders, which is a surefire way to get your name out there.
Everyone has a unique set of talents and shortcomings. Hence, prioritizing your soft skills is the first step in learning how to improve them because you naturally excel in some areas and struggle in others. Spending some time analyzing your strengths and weaknesses to see where you need to focus your efforts
A job in finance or accounting might be challenging to break into unless you are prepared to invest the time and effort necessary to make yourself stand out. Of course, once you have decided to take on the challenge, you will face a lot of competition along the way, but if you persevere, you will have much to gain.
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5 TIPS FOR A SUCCESSFUL CAREER IN ACCOUNTING AND FINANCE